Friday, July 15, 2011

NOVA Open 40k Prep Newsletter #2, New Sports Scoring, Draft Appearance Rules and Rubric



This will go up on the site, and be e-mailed to all 40k attendees.  Organizers for the other events *Should* be getting newsletters/heads-up e-mails to their attendees in relatively short order.

Excerpted, glance at our Sports Scoring this year:

New Sportsmanship Scoring
Instead of asking players to rate each of their opponents better or worse than others, we will be implementing an “Excellent, Average or Terrible” sportsmanship system (Often referred to as "Pass/Fail"). Repetitive Terrible marks will risk your score, ability to continue the specific event, and invitations to future NOVA Opens.

To prevent gaming the system, our judges and organizers will aggressively handle repeat Terrible marks on a case-by-case investigative basis. People out to undermine the enjoyment of fellow gamers or focused on damaging an opponent’s score out of spite, will be addressed seriously.

Players tied for the highest total number of Excellent marks will receive special acknowledgment, and eligibility for our Heart of Gold sportsmanship award. Even if you do not befriend every opponent, we require you put forth your BEST effort toward the social component of our shared hobby.

I've also included below links to DRAFT Appearance Scoring Rules and Rubric as put together by our 40k Chief Appearance Judge, Geoff.  He may poke me for putting up a draft but <3 Geoff!

DRAFT Appearance Rules 2011
DRAFT Appearance Scorecard 2011


  1. Excellent, I'll only fail a lot then. Although I did do better than expected.

  2. I told you that the drafts were 'postable', Mike. That was on June 16th. (So, you don't actually read my emails, eh? Much is explained.) There is not much that needs changing either, since it is applicable to Warhammer Fantasy too. Comments welcomed.

  3. I don't know, I feel like my opponent should be responsible for their own enjoyment. :)

  4. I agree, which is why this year we stripped Sportsmanship out of the Overall / Ren Man scoring, and are using it as a player "WARNING" button for behavior that goes beyond the enjoyment of your opponent and into actively attempting to destroy it.


  5. Does that mean tilting is not allowed? Or more just tilting that becomes full on bullying.

  6. "...which is why this year we stripped Sportsmanship out of the Overall / Ren Man scoring, and are using it as a player "WARNING" button for behavior that goes beyond the enjoyment of your opponent and into actively attempting to destroy it."

    You know Mike, this has me worried. Smacks a bit to much like 'Ard Boyz to me. Where as long as your opponent isn't a total Ass and you do not catch him cheating, anything pretty much goes. And if I complain to much about it I get accused of gaming the score and not invited back. I think there need to be a score penalty for being a dushbag to your opponent. Sure not everyone is going to do it, but in a 256 player tournament with big prizes involved, it will bring out the worst in a lot of people. Just my 2 cents

  7. Jay,

    It's a legitimate concern, but chipmunking is just as much a concern. At the same time, having a single person's opinion of you affect an otherwise objective score is the epitome of unfair.

    Last year, with sports being equal to competitive for overall, we even had a low scorer afterward say to us that he simply didn't care about sportsmanship.

    This is therefore an inherently "stronger" approach to THAT guy in that multiple terribles are addressed with score dings or even being evicted from the event. At the same time, "I don't like that guy or his list" becomes more moot. Likeability is NOT sportsmanship.

    After seeing AdeptiCon and others do pass/fail, and after divorcing sports from generalship last year, I'm even further convinced that any large field will have bad apples ... those who don't care about sportsmanship, and those who will use it to chipmunk people. This approach destroys the latter while more powerfully addressing the former.

    It definitely helps that we've seen this "playtested" in a 240-person field, though.

  8. A couple of small points:

    1. The appearance rules don't say that you need to paint your own army, but they strongly imply it in a number of places. I don't really care one way or the other, but you might want to be explicit about it at some point.

    2. On the one hand, I kind of liked the old sportsmanship system. It encouraged not just meeting a base-line 'not a douche' level of friendliness, but also ensuring that the other guy actually enjoyed the game. And making sure that the other guy is enjoying the game (while making sure that everyone is playing by the rules and playing to win) takes just as much skill as pulling of a decent multi-assault or making your models pretty, and it was nice to have that skill evaluated.

    On the other hand, you get situations in which someone plays four really great games, but one of them isn't quite as great as the others, so you maybe give the opponent in that game not the highest score, and then maybe you beat that guy by .02 for best overall, and then feel bad about for a long time. So I guess avoiding that would be a good thing.

  9. As a follow-up:

    3. Reviewing the documents in preparation for comment #4, I noticed that you had explicitly handled the 'paint your own army thing', so ignore that.

    4. I'm curious about the 'Unity of Place' requirement. I don't have a horse in this race, as I think the armies I bring will all have the same bases, but perhaps talking about one of my other armies will illustrate the question.

    I frequently play a Sisters army with attached PDF forces and an Inquisitional Warband. Each faction gets their own painting/basing scheme precisely to avoid a 'Unity of Place'. Despite some very poorly written fluff explaining why they're all fighting together at the moment, they come from different worlds, represent different factions, and don't generally fight in the same places.

    I'm sure there are lots of examples of armies like this. A Space Marine player basing his Legion of the Damned differently, or Chaos Marine player basing his Daemons differently from his Marines.

    Anyhow, I'm wondering if the 'Unity of Place' requirements were designed to discourage this sort of thing, or to discourage using a hodge-podge of different models in one army. I'm slowly starting to get into painting more, and I find it interesting the different sorts of things people look for when judging painting.

  10. Your armies may come from different places but they are CURRENTLY fighting in the same place, hence the unity of place requirement. I actually got the idea from 'Faces of Battle' by John Keegan. A must read btw. And they are in the same time. The army's appearance should reflect this. If it does not, then you have an interesting collection of minis on the table, but not an army per se.
    The important thing is not where they are from, but where they are.

    A note on painting your army yourself: as I wrote, there is much trouble in verification. However, do note that to win for best painted single miniature you must paint that mini yourself-- this is actually in the NOVA FAQ. Players will be on their honor to tell the judges if they painted their best single nomination. They still get a score for it, but are not eligible for the prize if they did not.

  11. I'll definitely check it out.

  12. To confirm, painting is not a requirement to play but only for the prizes. I've got a new DE army and I'm a slow AND poor painter. The time I have is spent on the special characters that I rarely use and hence only have a few of, as opposed to painting the rest of the swarm of evil elves.

    That said, i am going to try to get them looking better before the big day.

  13. We strongly request that your army meet the basic 3 color minimum for play. While I'm not inclined to eject someone / prevent someone from playing who has spent time, money, and energy attending, it is a formal requirement of the event.

    Don't ruin your paint job globbing things on, of course, but primer and basic washes can be a great way to get an army up to basic standard.